KOLKATA: Calcutta High Court today granted bail to Assamese singer and filmmaker Sadanand Gogoi, who has been in jail for nearly 30 months after being arrested by CBI in connection with the multi-crore Saradha chit fund scam.
A division bench of acting Chief Justice Nishita Mhatre and Justice T Mookherjee granted bail to Gogoi on two bail bonds of Rs 12.5 lakh each.
The bench also directed Gogoi not to leave the jurisdiction of Kolkata police commissionerate and to meet the investigating officer once a month.
Seeking bail for the petitioner, counsel Milan Mukherjee submitted that Gogoi had earlier moved a bail prayer before the high court after having spent 308 days in custody, which had been denied.
Since then he had spent another 581 days in custody, but during this period he was questioned by CBI only once, Mukherjee submitted.
Arguing that Gogoi had spent 889 days in custody so far, the counsel prayed that he be released on bail.
The CBI counsel opposed the bail prayer claiming that the investigation would be hampered if Gogoi was released on bail because the tentacles of the Saradha scam were spread over several states in the east and Northeast India, including Assam, of which he is a resident.
After hearing both the parties, the court granted bail to Gogoi.
The division bench, however, canceled the bail of Sandhir Agarwal, another accused in the Saradha scam.
Agarwal had been granted bail by the Alipore District sessions court in November 2015, along with former West Bengal transport minister Madan Mitra.
The CBI had moved the high court seeking cancellation of bail granted to Agarwal, a businessman based in Kolkata.
Agarwal had been arrested in August, 2014 following allegations about his role in siphoning off funds for Saradha boss Sudipta Sen.